Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Stuff: Drawn In



Twitter is probably my first go to place online for news, information, and insight beyond the purely social aspects of Facebook. But more than that I can also listen in on the inner workings of some of my most admired creators in the world of comics and entertainment. It's sort of like a super massive coffee shop where I can sit back and listen to all the chatter; broadening the palette of my world.

Just the other day I was perusing the various posts over breakfast on the school campus when a noted creator - whose work sits on the Grand Central library shelves - popped this gem in regards to an interview with Sam Rami about making his version of Spider-man; saying he was honored to work on such an iconic character created by Stan Lee.

I'm not really sure the "diss" to Steve Ditko - the artist who co-created Spider-man with Lee - was honestly intentional, and there's nothing wrong with noting that. But using "always" usually inspires me, and as I packed up to go sit in a two hour math lecture I made the above reply in passing...

And logged back in, later, to see I was getting an ass-chewing.

He, I am far from the person to dissuade anyone from their passions; especially when it comes to making comics. But the simple, and most unfortunate truth is the business of comics is built on pretty much using and abusing the talent in the name of market share. Most notably you should read up on what it took for DC Comics to officially recognize Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel - the creative duo who actually created Superman, give them public credit, and pay them a minor royalty for their work at damn near the end of their lives.

So, who was Bill Finger? Well, while Bob Kane did draw up the original concept idea for a "bat-man", it was Bill who pretty much fleshed out everything we know and love about our favorite avenging rich boy with issues; even writing up the first handful of story archs that would establish his back story, name, and motivations. And yet, he has never received any credit for it, even forty years after his untimely death. His legacy, however, carries on, having birthed some of the more iconic characters out of the DC universe, including the original Green Lantern. And the industry does have the prestigious Bill Finger award; given each year to a hard working, yet under recognized creator/writer/artist in the industry. 

In the wake of the last twenty years in comics, the tide is changing; today the names of those who work on nearly everything are known and recognized. Meanwhile, outreach groups like The Hero Initiative have formed to reach help the greats of the past in need, who our industry has forgot.

As for me? Well, I'm pretty sure I've screwed myself out of an autograph for sure. Not that I'm going to stop buying her work, because she's good, alright. But then I guess that's the hazard of a text based social media on the go, huh?